Working through the Synberc Sustainability Plan, an interim Board of Directors has affirmed the decision to establish an independent non-profit organization to build on the successes of Synberc while taking on a new mission and broader participation. The Engineering Biology Research Consortium (EBRC) aims to be the leading organization for the academic and industrial synthetic biology research community, and has launched a national search for its Executive Director.
The vision of the EBRC is to be the leading organization in the US bringing together the synthetic biology community to provide the future vision for synthetic biology, catalyze leading-edge research and education programs, and promote dialogue about synthetic biology among policy-makers and other members of the public. The EBRC’s mission is to conduct activities and manage programs that strengthen the field’s research and education communities; articulate compelling research visions and goals; align those visions and goals with pressing national and global challenges; communicate the importance of those ideas to the research and education communities, government and industry stakeholders, and the public; and define workforce development needs and strategies to meet them.
The goals of the EBRC are to 1) establish itself as a widely accepted catalyst and voice for the US synthetic biology research and education communities; 2) bring the synthetic biology research and education communities together to envision and communicate future research and education aims and needs; 3) work with federal, state and local government agencies to transform the vision and goals into funded research and education programs; 4) convene researchers to develop proposals for pre-competitive research programs to address key research needs identified in the vision- and goal-setting processes and coordinate these efforts with US-based and international centers; 5) convene educators to develop new education and training resources to address key educational and workforce needs; 6) develop values of leadership, service and diversity by providing practitioners with the knowledge, training, networks, and venues needed to responsibly advance the field; and 7) convene members of the public, including policy-makers, to discuss the challenges and contribute to the vision and goals of the synthetic biology community.
The EBRC will achieve these goals by 1) building an open and inclusive organization to legitimately serve as a catalyst and voice for the broader synthetic biology research community; 2) engaging the synthetic biology research and education communities through a variety of approaches; 3) engaging funding institutions and agencies on critical research needs; 4) engaging public and policy stakeholders to guide activities toward the common good; and 5) developing and broadly disseminating written and other materials that will help to guide the development and use of synthetic biology.